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Matthew Spencer


About Matthew Spencer

Spencer is interested in how our world is represented to us through simulated images in the media and how these in turn form our comprehension of the world around us, basing his pieces on images from the media and internet. His works are cynical of utopian notions surrounding our relationship with the natural world, effectively combining medium, process and aesthetics as message. The MDF, household paint and painstakingly slow hand cutting process that he uses gives the work a raw abandoned aesthetic, creating scenes which depict gritty disenchanted visions of man-made structures and waste in woods and forests. Spencer takes the craftsmanship of woodcarving to the extreme by laboriously hand cutting elaborate patterns into sheets of wood in the style of the CNC (Computer Numerical Control) laser/router machines which are used in much modern manufacturing. He is interested in the contrast between such contemporary processes, materials, media, internet and the mark of the individual and traditional. He begins with drilling out the spaces in between the branches, with fret saw blades held between his fingers he cuts out the fine detailing and uses a jigsaw to finish the process. Cutting the outline of trees and branches into sheets of wood (MDF, which Ironically is not real wood; it is a man-made material) is in some respects this is an unnecessary repetition of meaning, seemingly idiotic, this it is part of the tongue in cheek humour he uses, in over embellishing the obvious issues in his work he also raises important questions about the nature and scope of knowledge. 


2008- 10, Master of Fine Art, Bath Spa University
2005-08, BA (hons) Fine Art, Bath Spa University



2014 Signature Art Prize 

2013 New Lights Art Prize (shortlisted) 
2012 Signature Art Prize winner
2012 NEO Studio Prize 
2011 The Southwood NOAC Award for best UK Artist(under 25) 
2011 New Lights Painting Prize (Shortlisted)


2015 AAF Singapore, Degreeart.com, Singapore

2015 Painting the Future, Contemporary Collective, DegreeArt.com, London

2014 Edinburgh Art Fair, DegreeArt.com, Edinburgh

2014 AAF Batersea, DegreeArt.com, London

2014 Buy Art Fair, DegreeArt.com, Manchester

2014 AAF Bristol, DegreeArt.com, Bristol

2014 AAF Hampstead, DegreeArt.com

2014 AAF Singapore, Degreeart.com, Singapore

2014 Loud and Western, Degreeart.com, Fulham

2014 Between the lines, The Execution Room, Degreeart.com, London

2013 Edinburgh Art Fair, DegreeArt.com, Edinburgh

2013 Buy Art Fair, DegreeArt.com, Manchester

2013 AAF Batersea, DegreeArt.com, London

2013 The Biscuit Factory, Newcastle

2013 New Lights Art Prize, The Mercer Gallery, Harrogate

2013 New Lights, Zillah Bell Gallery, Thirsk

2012 Portfolio, Marburae Art Gallery, Macclesfield

2012 The Signature Art Prize, DegreeArt, London

2012 Cork Street Open Exhibition, Mayfair, London

2012 The Great North Art Show, Ripon

2012 Summer Salon, Islington Arts Factory, London

2012 NEO Art Prize, Gallery 32, Bolton

2012 Candid Berlin, Universität der Künste, Berlin

2012 Debut Contemporary, London

2012 The Pallant House Gallery, Chichester

2011 National Open Art Competition Exhibition, The Minerva Theatre, Chichester

2011 25 Years of Christmas, Black Swan Arts, Frome

2011 New lights Painting Prize, The Mercer Gallery, Harrogate 

2011 Mixed Media Exhibition, The Candid Arts Trust, London 

2010 A Few of My Favourite Things, Black Swan Arts, Frome 

2008 Affordable Art Fair, Bristol – bo lee Gallery www.affordableartfair.com 

2008 Affordable Art Fair, London – bo lee Gallery www.affordableartfair.com 

2008 100%, Mauger Modern Art - Bath, UK 

2008 Control Art Delete – Free Range, Truman Brewery, Brick Lane, London 

2008 Wilderness 2 – The American Museum in Britain, Claverton Down, Bath 

2007 Wilderness – The American Museum in Britain, Claverton Down, Bath


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